Novartis Takes Top Spot in Managed Care Audit--Again

January 23, 2008

Pharmaceutical Executive

Volume 0, Issue 0

Managed care pharmacy executives list their favorite pharmaceutical companies based on promotional activities and the ability to meet managed care needs. Novartis reigns for 11th straight quarter.

Yesterday, Verispan released the results of its biannual Managed Care Pharmacy Executive Audit, and Novartis is once again in the driver?s seat--holding the top position for the 11th consecutive time.

The top pharma companies are:

  • Novartis
  • Merck
  • Schering-Plough
  • AstraZeneca
  • Abbott Labs

The audit is a panel-based survey answered by pharmacy directors at managed care organizations who are directly involved in formulary decisions.

Pharmacy executives regularly meet with pharma account directors to discuss decisions about drugs and new advances in therapeutic categories. The directors also provide unbiased education seminars for members of the plan or physicians affiliated with a plan. "It's not just about products. It is also information for the betterment of the physicians or the members themselves," said Keith Mandia, senior director of managed care product management at Verispan.

To conduct the study, Verispan used a list of executives who are in the pharmacy arena within the managed care companies. The only criterion was that they must have interactions with the account directors and be involved in pharmacy-related decisions. "Naturally, it's in our best interest to have folks on the panel that are common accounts of interest to our clients, but they can be small, medium, or large managed care organizations," Mandia told Pharm Exec on Tuesday.

From cycle to cycle, Verispan retains approximately 85 percent of its panel. The executives rank account personnel, contracting, value-added programs, and an overall corporate approach. Finally, though not included in the overall ranking, is how helpful pharma companies are in regards to Medicare Part D.

"These companies that are in the top five are longtime participants in partnering with managed care organizations," Mandia said. 'These are the ones that we would typically see the top five or top ten for sure."

Verispan does not release the top 10.